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Taking a Deep Breath of Perspective

We all meet interesting people from time to time. For one year I had a person enter my life that gave me a world’s worth of perspective. At the time he was the store manager of one of the big-box discounters in town. While our sons shared activities together, he shared amazing information not only about his store, but about all the big-box discounters in town. It was eye-opening to say the least.

If you have only recently found this blog, you should know that I am a big believer in calculating and understanding your overall market size for your category and knowing your share of that market. The easiest way to find the size of your market is to find national numbers for your industry, divide by the US population and multiply that result times your market population.

For instance, if you are in a $20 billion industry, divide that by 323 million people in the USA to get $62/person. If your market is 150,000 people, then multiply $62 x 150,000 to get a market size of $9.3 million. You can adjust that number up or down based on your local economy (your average household income versus the national average). You can also adjust for other factors like geography (more boats are likely to be sold in Michigan or Florida than Nebraska), or demographics (your percentage of children compared to the national average if your category is marketed primarily to children). It gives you a rough estimate, that if you calculate the same way year after year shows you exactly where you stand in your market.

I’ve been doing this in the Jackson market for decades and measuring our share over the years.

My big-box friend handed me numbers of what the big-box stores were doing in toy sales in our market. Adding them up, the math fit what I already knew about the size of the market in Jackson. The part that made my heart flutter was knowing that I was doing more in my single store than any one of those big guys.


Is it a Vase or Two Faces?

Here’s the perspective part … 

All of these stores do way more volume overall than I do because they also sell grocery, clothing, hardware, electronics, and household goods among other stuff. All of these stores have way more traffic on a daily, weekly, monthly basis than I could ever imagine. All of these stores run weekly sales and discounts with huge flyers in every Sunday’s paper to go with their national TV campaigns and other advertising efforts. All of these stores focus on the hottest TV-advertised toys every year, adding the vendors’ marketing efforts to their own. All of these stores get full-blown media coverage, too.

Think about that last one for a second. This holiday season you are going to hear stories about Amazon, Walmart, and Target. All. The. Time. You are going to hear about their sales. You are going to hear about their overall volume. You are going to hear about their strategies to draw more traffic (more discounting—you read it hear first!) Your customers are going to hear all that, too.

Yet locally, without the discounting, without the hot items for your industry, without the national TV campaign and Sunday flyers and vendors marketing for you, without all the grocery-driven traffic, without all the media hype, you’re going to stand toe-to-toe with these big giants and still do amazing numbers in your category, maybe even equal or better than they do individually.

When people tell you it is all about price, and that discounting is the only way to get sales, go ahead and nod your head in agreement until those uninformed people walk away. Then remember that a guy in a small, depressed, blue-collar city in Michigan with all the inherent disadvantages was able to beat all the big guys through better service, better staff, product knowledge, smarter marketing, and higher prices.

You will, too!

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS Calculating Market Size and Market Share can be incredibly helpful, even if your business is growing. If your market is getting bigger, but your share is decreasing, then even though you are growing, you are still losing out to competitors. Something needs to be fixed. It can also help you understand why sales are decreasing and when to get out of the market. We saw our market shrink to a size that wouldn’t sustain us in our current model. Our options were to shrink to fit the market, move to a different market, or close. We chose the latter so that I could spend my time helping a bigger market … you!

PPS That store manager left Jackson the year after we met to run a larger store in another part of the country, but not before leaving me with a wealth of knowledge and a perspective for which I am eternally grateful.

What to Do the First Time It Happens

Every July for our Summer Fun Sale we would mark down thousands of old, slow-selling, discontinued merchandise to ridiculously low prices to move out that merchandise, generate some cash, and get ready for the upcoming holiday season. With close to a million dollars in inventory, the process was quite tedious and time consuming. Every single sale price had to be manually entered into our Point-Of-Sale system.

Sometimes we missed one (or three).

The staff was instructed to carefully watch prices as they scanned items at checkout to make sure they were coming up at the sale price, and to make changes immediately whenever a mistake was found. If it didn’t ring up right the first time, it was quickly corrected and the customer sent on her happy way.

Image result for bad retail sale signsYet every single one of us can recall a time in our own lives as customers when something didn’t ring up right and you didn’t go on your happy way.

You get to the register expecting a certain price and it rings up higher. You say something to the cashier. His first response is to tell you that he doesn’t know about the sale or that he can only go by what the computer tells him. His second response is to look you straight in the eye and tell you he doesn’t trust you by phoning for someone else to go check the display. His third response is to tell you that “they” didn’t put the right signs on the display and that the item you had didn’t qualify for that discount/coupon/special deal. Yes, blame it on the faceless “they.” His fourth response is to get a manager who goes through the first three responses all over again before deciding to either give you the discount the signs says you should get or hide behind corporate speak to not give you the discount.

Either way you walk out of the store feeling like a loser.

Do you want your customers walking out of the store feeling like a loser? Of course not. Chicken dinners for everyone!!

Here’s how you do it when you have a pricing mistake.

“Oh my gosh! I am so sorry. Let me go verify what the price is supposed to be.” 

Say all that. Apologize. Go check the price (the above is a safe statement that doesn’t accuse them of lying). Then, regardless of the outcome, give that person the price they expected with another round of apologies for the confusion.

It doesn’t matter if someone did the signage wrong and that item is not supposed to be on sale. It doesn’t matter if the customer was confused because the signage wasn’t clear enough. It doesn’t matter if the customer interpreted the sign to mean something you didn’t intend it to mean. The first time a customer perceives something different than what you intended, you give them what they thought they were going to get. Then you go fix the signs and displays and prices so that there won’t be any more confusion.

Always give the first customer the benefit of the doubt. It doesn’t cost you that much in the long run because you keep the customer happy. Plus, you learn quickly how others might perceive your sales or signs, and you fix the problem before anyone else gets upset.

“I’m really sorry about this. Those weren’t supposed to be included in the 25% off sale, but that’s our fault for not putting the signs up correctly. I’ll give you the 25% off on this item. Will that be okay?”

You’re going to make mistakes. Own up to them. Pay for them. Make the customer happy. Then go correct the mistake. That’s the key to winning customers’ hearts.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS Even when the customer interpreted the sign wrong, you should still take some of the blame. Make sure your signs, sales, specials are bullet-proof by making them as clear and detailed as possible so that there is little chance of confusion.

PPS Every now and then you get the customer trying to cheat the system. They find an error like improper signage and load up their cart with everything on the shelf. That’s the exception to the above rule. You just better hope it was honest confusion about the sign, otherwise they might have a leg to stand on.

PPPS When you pay for your mistakes, not only do you make the customers happy, you build a level of trust. Your customers will be more likely to take you at your word when you take financial responsibility for your errors.

My Big Fat Email Subject Line Mistake

Your subject line is the most important part of your email. Period.

Get it right and your email is a success. Get it wrong and nothing else matters. I learned that the hard way yesterday.

We’re doing a big promotion on Election Day. Something new. The subject line in my email read…

“Election Day ONLY – 20% Off all Gift Certificate Sales! See inside for details…”

The first two people I talked to about the promotion asked the same question. “Do we get 20% off the purchase of a gift certificate or 20% off purchases made with a gift certificate?”

I went back and read the content of the email. It clearly states that you get 20% off the purchase of a gift certificate. How did they get so confused? Then I read the subject line again. I saw the error of my ways. It wasn’t as clear and concise as it should have been. I left room for interpretation.


First, before you send an email, understand that many people will only ever read the subject line. They get so much email that they scan subject lines and hit the delete button. Therefore your subject line has to get your point across clearly and quickly with no room for doubt. Clever and cutesie subject lines leave too much room for interpretation. There should be no doubt about the purpose of your email. There should be only one interpretation of your subject line.

The best way to make sure your subject line is tight and to the point is to ask for help. Ask someone outside of your bottle to read your subject line and tell you what it means to them. Try to ferret out all the possible meanings. Then rewrite it to eliminate any confusion or misinterpretation.

Second, if you can’t make your point in the subject line, perhaps because it is too nuanced or complicated, then make sure your subject line has enough enticement to make people want to open the email. According to MailChimp, the average open rate for email from retailers is about 22%. In other words, 8 out of 10 people likely won’t open your email. You have to give them a reason.

Make it clear. Make it concise. Make it work for the 8 out of 10 that don’t open emails. Make it legitimate and not sounding too spammy. Make your subject line get people to want to open your email.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS In case you’re wondering why I am doing a promotion like this for the store, here are the reasons…

  1. I get a huge influx of cash right when I need it most to help stock up for Christmas.
  2. Customers who redeem gift certificates often spend much more that what the gift certificate was worth.
  3. I get my customers to commit to shopping with me now before some shiny bauble from someone else catches their eye later.
  4. I get to promote Election Day as an important day.
  5. My Transactional Customers get a great deal!
  6. About 10% of all gift certificates go un-redeemed, so I’m really only giving away a small bit of margin.

You Don’t Make it Up in Volume

(Warning: this post contains math. Proceed with caution.)

“We lose a dollar on each one we sell, but we make it up in volume.”

Yeah, we all know that isn’t right, but there is a mistaken belief that if you lower your prices, you can easily make up the lower margins through higher volume.

Warehouse Melissa and Doug 2

Let me show you why that doesn’t necessarily work.

First, we have to make an assumption together. Your business has fixed costs that do not change as your sales change (utilities, rent, etc), and your business has variable costs that go up as you do more volume (credit card fees, payroll, freight, advertising, etc).

Agreed? Good.


Here is some simple math…

You have an item you purchase for $10 and sell for $20. Let’s say you sold 24 of this item last year. That gives you a gross profit of $240 (24 units x $10 in profit per unit = $240 gross profit).

But you have the grand idea to lower the price 10% to $18, figuring you’ll make it up in volume.


To get the same $240 in gross profit, you now need to sell 30 units (30 x $8 = $240). That’s a 25% increase in units sold. With more units sold, however, your variable costs will go up. Maybe it is advertising because you had to spend more to get the word out about your lower price. Maybe it is extra sales people needed to help boost sales. Maybe it is more credit card transaction fees.

Realistically, just selling 25% more units won’t even break even because of the rise in variable costs. You’ll probably need closer to 30% more in units sold to cover your 10% discount.

Do you think 10% Off is enough to sell that many more units?


Okay, maybe 10% isn’t enough to move the needle. Let’s go 20% Off and sell them for $16!

Here’s the math…

40 units x $6 = $240.  Yes, you now need to sell 67% more units just to get the same gross profit! More than likely, as your variable costs go up, you’ll probably need to sell about 70-75% more units to truly break even.

How about 30% Off?

60 units x $4 = $240. If you go to 30% Off, you better be able to sell 250-300% more units to make it up in volume.

That is a lot of extra traffic you’re going to need to draw, and a lot of staff you’re going to need to handle those sales.


When you do the math, making it up in volume isn’t the answer. But ask yourself this question…

If I raise my prices a little, how many sales might I lose?

A 10% price increase could handle a 17% drop in units sold and make you the same amount of gross profit.

See? Those math classes in high school can pay off!

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS Yes, you can raise your prices. With the way insurance premiums, taxes, utilities and other expenses keep rising, you have to find ways to make more money just to stay in business. But just a straight increase across the board isn’t the strategy. Download my FREE eBook Pricing for Profit in the Free Resources section to see smart ways to raise your prices (that won’t cost you a single unit sold).


Dumb Logic – Don’t Fall for It

At a recent presentation I was told that more money is being spent on mobile advertising than on PC advertising. No source was given so I cannot verify the truth of that statement. Then again, it doesn’t matter.

The presenter was using that info to tell an audience of small businesses that since the big boys are spending on mobile, we should, too. “They know what they’re doing.”

Yeah, right. (See “New Coke”, see “Creepy Burger King Guy”, see whatever company that had all the monkeys, see pretty much 75% of all Super Bowl commercials…)

Creepy Burger King Guy

If your advertising salesperson or consultant or agency ever tells you to do something because all the major giant retailers are doing it, you need to fire them immediately.


First, you don’t have the budget of those big boys. They spend money like no tomorrow hoping something will catch fire. They spend money in every medium out there. They are not discriminate in their spending. They chase every new opportunity like it is a Leprechaun with a pot of gold. They throw time and effort and resources at each one (and still get a lot of it wrong). You don’t have the same resources.

Second, what works for them isn’t necessarily the right thing for you and vice versa. Take the Mobile App for one. One of the most popular things to do with mobile is send your customers a coupon. We’ve already discussed the dangers of coupons. Even more bewildering to me is the coupon that gets sent after they have entered your store. Really? If they’ve already entered your store, you don’t need more marketing. You won. A coupon at that moment is simply you paying someone else to give away more of your margin. Once the customer is in the store, you wow them with your well-trained sales team.


Don’t take your cue from major chain retailers. Take your cue from your best customers. Chances are they aren’t in your store because of coupons and discounts and deals and silly ads that made them laugh. They are in your store because of the relationship you’ve fostered. They are in your store because of the fun they have when they visit. They are in your store because you make them feel like they belong.

You still need to do marketing. You just have to do it the right way for you. This will help…

  • Go to the Free Resources page on my website.
  • Start at the  top of the column titled “Improve Your Marketing”.
  • Download each PDF (they’re FREE).
  • Read them.
  • Write down your questions.
  • Email me your questions.

I’ll help you either through this blog or directly by email to get your marketing on track in a way that will work for you.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS You don’t see a cost attached to my offer up above. There isn’t one. That isn’t to say that we won’t enter some kind of consulting agreement down the road (if you really need that kind of hand-holding). But answering your questions and helping you get on the right track is always free.

PPS Why FREE? Why do I give away so much stuff? Simple. I want you to succeed. Period. I don’t want barriers between you and your success.  I am not doing this for my own gain. I’m doing it for yours. Is there some hidden ulterior motive? Yes. I like to do presentations for groups of retailers. I charge money for those. The more you use and share my stuff, the more likely your organization will want to hire me to speak. But most importantly, for anyone to hire me, first you have to succeed.

Changing Your Thinking on Coupons

I’m not a fan of coupons. There. I said it.

If you’ve downloaded my free eBook Main Street Marketing on a Shoestring Budget, you know I prefer giving away gift certificates with no strings attached – instead of coupons – to attract new customers.

I also fear that using coupons too much trains your customers to wait for the next coupon before they shop.

Lastly, I believe coupons are more geared toward the Transactional Customer than the Relational Customer (the latter whom should be your primary target in your advertising and marketing).

With all that said, coupons done right can be a valuable part of your tool box.

Retail Toolbox


As I told you yesterday, the real key for coupons is to make them Rare and Special. Rare so that people jump on the deal when it happens and aren’t trained to wait for the next one to make their next purchase. Special so that the customer isn’t anticipating the next coupon and is more likely to act on the current one.

Rare and Special will increase your ROI because they will get more people to act on the current coupon. Your other big issue is delivery. How do you get those coupons into the right hands?

  • Newspaper Inserts – this is the preferred method of the big bog stores because they have the economy of scale for printing and delivering to get the best rates, and they don’t care who gets their coupons
  • Direct Mail – you can buy a list (and hope it is okay) or build your own. One takes money and has little return. One takes time but has a better return.
  • Postal Zip Codes – you can target zip codes instead of direct addresses for a little less per piece than direct mail
  • Email – easily the cheapest, easiest to share, but also most easily duplicated

Let’s look at that last one a little more closely…


If your goal is to limit the coupon to “one per customer”, email can be tricky because it is easy for a customer to print out multiple copies and use them herself or give them to her friends. That’s the big question I always get about sending coupons via email. “But how will I track if a customer uses more than one?”

I always ask back, “Does it matter if a customer uses more than one?”

Your goal for any coupon should be to Drive Traffic and Increase Sales. That is what coupons do best. Where is the harm if a customer shares your coupon with others? Where is the harm if the customer makes multiple trips using multiple coupons? Don’t both of those Drive Traffic and Increase Sales?

If your goal is to Increase Profits, then a coupon isn’t your friend in the first place. Coupons won’t help your profit margin (I’ll show you the math later why “lower your price and make it up in volume” doesn’t really work), but they can increase your traffic and cash flow and give your sales staff the chance to increase average ticket sizes and items per transaction.


If you send out a coupon via email, you have to consider two things…

  1. It will be shared
  2. It will be printed/used multiple times

If your goal is to Drive Traffic and Increase Sales, sharing and printing multiple copies are both GOOD things. In fact you want to encourage that.

Encourage your email list peeps to share the coupon with as many people as they can. It increases your reach to people who might not yet know you and it gets your fans to promote your business for you. In fact, take it a step further and encourage social media sharing, too. Your goal should be to get the coupon to as many people as possible as cheaply as possible. That’s how to get the best ROI.

Encourage your email list peeps to use the coupon early and often, too. Every trip they make means another chance to deepen your relationship with them and turn them into fans. (If you sell a commodity item like food that people are buying weekly, simply put a tighter time limit on the coupon to keep the coupon Rare and Special). The reality is that you won’t get that many multiple trips. Unless your offer is incredibly compelling and you’re giving away half the store, the likelihood that a customer is going to shop your store twice in one week is fairly low to begin with.

Email is the cheapest way to deliver coupons. It also is one of the most powerful ways to get your fan base to help you reach more and more people. You just have to change your thinking from one of scarcity (“limit one per…”) to generosity (“use it early and often and share it with the world…”).

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS My final tip is to keep the coupon as simple as possible with as few rules and exceptions as possible. The easier it is to use, the happier your customers will be.

Coupons Aren’t Bad (When They are Rare and Special)

Back in the 90’s we started a direct mail newsletter for Toy House. We sent out a mailing every other month.

Conventional Wisdom at the time said we needed to include a coupon with each mailing to help us “track the effectiveness” of the mailing. So we included a $20 off a $100 purchase coupon in each mailing.


Two things happened…

First, we never really were able to “track the effectiveness” of the newsletter, only the effectiveness of the coupon (which grew considerably in November, but waned in other months). It was hard to say whether the other articles were even read, let alone acted upon. In theory, we were told the coupon would mean that people would at least read the newsletter without throwing it away (although today I’m not sure if that was the case).

Second, we were training customers to save their big purchases until another coupon arrived. I would be showing a customer a new car seat and the first question was always, “When does your next coupon come out?”

Bed Bath and Beyond just announced that their coupon program was backfiring and causing them to lose profit as people just waited for the next coupon before they shopped. We learned that from sending out six a year. They send out one or more a week.


We decided over a decade ago that sending out multiple coupons wasn’t the answer. We shifted the direct mail newsletter to email newsletters (no coupon) and shifted the coupon to a postcard mailed only in November. Our response to that direct mail piece doubled the ROI of any previous mailings because it was Rare and Special.


Even with that shift to a once-a-year coupon, we have seen our annual mailing become less and less effective over the years. Although it is Rare, it is no longer Special. It is a foregone conclusion.

Until this year.

We’ll be doing a different type of coupon this year for two reasons.

  • First, we need to make it Special again.
  • Second, we want to shift away from the expenses of direct mail, so it will be an email coupon.

We have already begun marketing to our customers the importance of being signed up to get our emails. We have already begun prepping them that something new is going to happen this year. We have already begun the buzz and excitement as our customers are wondering what will happen.

You can use coupons in your marketing tool box. Just remember that to be most effective, they have to be both Rare and Special.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS I’ll tell you how we are going to manage an email coupon in an upcoming post. Make sure you and your fellow store owners have signed up to get this blog in your inbox.

The Need to Keep Raising the Bar

Bed Bath and Beyond just announced that their coupon strategy is backfiring and that their profits are hurting because everyone is waiting for the coupon to do their shopping.

Umm… yeah. When you send the coupon out every week and never enforce the exclusions or expiration date, you pretty much send out the message that everything in the store is always 20% off. Anyone paying full price in that store is either lazy or an idiot.

What used to be special is now considered the norm.

BBB faces a dilemma. They either have to drop the coupon program and wean customers off the 20% discount (a daunting and dangerous task), or raise the bar on the coupon program to make it special again.

They said in the article, “Bed Bath and Beyond says it plans to draw in more customers through marketing.”

Okay, but how? A bigger, deeper coupon every so often? (further eroding profits) or something else?


If you are doing something special for your customers, eventually it goes from special to expected and the marketing pull from it will taper off. If it is a discount, that discount will have to grow over time to remain equally effective.

If you consistently go above and beyond your customers’ expectations, eventually they will come to expect it, meaning you’ll have to raise the bar even farther.

As you choose your marketing strategy, remember that the special things you do today will become the norm tomorrow. Make sure you have room to raise the bar when the effects start tapering off.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS Surprise and Delight are the best tools for attracting new customers because you’ll never run out of new and fun and inexpensive ways to surprise and delight your customers. Check out these two Free Resources to get some ideas of things you can do to raise the bar and attract more customers – Generating Word of Mouth and Customer Service: From Weak to WOW!. I doubt either of these will be strategies employed by BBB (although they should).

Two Specialty Retail Truths

If you’ve been a specialty retailer for several years you know these two things will happen every year. Every. Single. Year.

  1. A vendor who used to be exclusively sold only in specialty stores will start selling to a big box category killer (like Home Depot, Office Depot, Barnes & Noble, Toys R Us) or a major discounter (like Target, K-Mart or Wal-Mart.)
  2. A product you sell will be advertised nationally and sold somewhere (online, in a discount club store or flash site) below cost.

Write these down, my friends. They will happen. So far, they have happened every single year this century and will happen every single year for the foreseeable future.

Now you know. Now there is no reason to go postal when it happens. You saw it coming.

Yeah, it gets emotional. We indie retailer are a passionate bunch and hurts when we get betrayed. But the smart retailers are not only expecting it, they are dealing with it in a cold-hearted, calculating manner deciding whether to cut and run or ride out the storm based on sales and profits, not emotions and surprise.


Cut and run when the vendor sells out completely and gives all their product and support to the big guys.

Cut and run when the product gets turned into a commodity sold everywhere, while you are trying to be the cutting edge leader in your field.

Cut and run when the traffic it brings in because of its popularity no longer justifies the lost margins.

Cut and run when you have another company offering you the same items but with better terms.


Ride it out when the product still sells at the price you set.

Ride it out when it is just a small sample, and you’re carrying the whole shooting match. You’ll get referrals and eventually the big box will move on. Cherry-picked lines don’t often last long in the chains.

Ride it out when your model is built on selling the most popular items, but with better service and experience than your competitors.

Vendors make decisions based on numbers. You should, too. Especially since you saw it coming.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS Sure, sometimes it hurts your bottom line. Sometimes it helps. You can focus on the negative, which is usually out of your control, or focus on what you can do. I find that the latter usually helps keep me fired up and moving forward.

Moms, Mobile Phones, and the Transactional Customer

I have been bombarded with companies selling me on the merits and benefits of Mobile Marketing. The main focus is sending out texts with coupons and deals to people in the vicinity. Some of these companies are offering me packages less than $20/week. Others want me to commit to thousands a month. They have the statistics that show they will bring me gold.

“Lies, damned lies, and statistics.” -Mark Twain

Kids Today magazine just had an article this month with even more statistics on mobile that I found quite enlightening and worth exploring deeper.

Here is the first statistic from the article:

“According to the latest data from comStore, overall mobile purchasing accounted for 11% of e-commerce spending in 2013.”

E-commerce spending, depending on your source, is anywhere from 3% to 10% of all retail purchases, so mobile purchasing is anywhere from 0.3% to 1.1% of all retail purchases. Before you drop a load of your advertising budget on mobile, keep that in mind. Shopping on their phone is an incredibly small percentage of all retail sales.

But what about coupons they get on their phones and then bring into the store?

Here is the second statistic:

“Nine out of ten moms take notice of advertisements on their smartphones. One-quarter clicked to get a coupon after receiving a mobile ad and 15% of moms clicked on the ad to go to the website.”

In other words, almost all of the moms saw the ads, but 75% of the moms did not take the bait, 85% of the moms were not enticed to go to the website. Now, don’t get me wrong. Twenty-five percent is still a pretty good click-thru rate. But remember who is clicking – the Transactional Customer – the mom who believes she is the expert on the product and knows more about it than you do. These moms are loyal to one thing only – the deal. They have no loyalty to your store and only buy from you when you have a sale.

But aren’t all moms all about the price?

Here is the third statistic:

“More than half the moms, 53%, say coupons are appealing in a mobile ad; while 23% want a deal that is located nearby.”

Once again proof that roughly half the population in any category, including the technologically savvy new moms, is interested in the deal (Transactional Customers) and the other half is more interested in the trust factors (Relational Customers).

When you plot out your strategy, decide which customer you want to attract and proceed accordingly. While your competitors go after that 53%, remember that there is a lot of business to be done with the 47% who don’t find coupons on their phones appealing.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS Don’t think of me as anti-technology. Smartphones are here to stay. You need a website and it needs to be optimized for mobile. You need social media as one part of your relationship-building portfolio with your customer base – and many moms are using their smartphones as their primary tool for social media. You also need to be smart about where and how you spend your money. Your most loyal customers are not loyal because of your coupons, they are loyal because they trust you. Before you buy a mobile marketing plan, make sure you’ve put enough effort into building that trust and that the mobile plan reinforces that trust, not undermines it.